Newborn and Infant Health and Care


The Living Force
Any guidance on newborn and infant health and care in this crazy “modern” can world we live in?

I have searched the forum, and have found some resources worth researching and studying further - such as Firestone’s book ‘Compassionate Childrearing’ in the thread titled ‘What about having children?’ (Or something similar.)

Much appreciated. TIA.
Here's a list.
Breastfeed baby.
Give baby everything baby wants for at least the first 6 months. Don't ignore baby. Don't let baby cry unattended.
No vaccines.
No blood drawn for genetic testing.
Don't let baby out of your sight at the hospital.
No circumcision.
Here's a list.
Breastfeed baby.
Give baby everything baby wants for at least the first 6 months. Don't ignore baby. Don't let baby cry unattended.
No vaccines.
No blood drawn for genetic testing.
Don't let baby out of your sight at the hospital.
No circumcision.
and you can read: "Healing Developmental Trauma How Early Trauma Affects Self-Regulation, Self-Image, and the Capacity for Relationship" by Heller and Lapierre
For what it's worth, here's another list. Sorry all parents, since this is parenting 101, but for those who are new to parenthood

When baby is unhappy, check :
  • Hungry
  • Tired
  • Wind
  • Filled nappy
Also, always keep a clean, wet flannel in a sealed plastic bag - in your cars glovebox. You never know when you will need to wipe them - somewhere.

You will need to "sleep train" baby at about 1 to 2 years old. you will know when it is time. This is when they wake at around 12 pm to feed, but they don't really need to. It's because they are just used to waking at that time, and have already fed enough to take them through the night. You will have to coax them back to sleep, and eventually smooth over that time of night, so they (and you) can sleep through. For us it took about 3 to 4 nights. By this time you will be begging for a full nights sleep, so this will be an incentive. It will be hard to not respond to your baby, but just comfort them, and lull them back to sleep.

Give them plain, unsweetened yogurt when they can take solids. It helps with gut flora (especially if you can't breast feed) and apparently helps preventing the development of allergies.

Do your best to try to breast feed - nature is always best ! You will impart antibodies to you babe, and help protect them. Beastfeeding is a really important bonding time for them, and you.

If your are Mother - Be prepared to lose lots of sleep. This will affect your memory of this time with your baby. If you are Dad - record and remember this time, so you can help your partner remember, or fill in any blanks that she may have forgotten.

Take lots of videos and photos. Believe it or not, it is a short time in the grander picture of their life, and before you know it they are at high school, and you have trouble remembering them when they were so young.

Don't buy "organic" baby food, when they are ready for solids. Make it yourself. You will then know what is really in it, and it tastes nicer anyway, and costs less. Homemade mince and mashed veggies worked for us well.

That's all I can think of for now. This is a great thread, so thank you @SMM for creating this. I hope it becomes a valuable resource for all new parents
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Babies can get stomach aches or colic, which can be very painful. If you breastfeed, make sure you don’t eat food which will cause digestive issues for baby.

I used a hairdryer on my babies when they had a stomach ache and when their tummies felt hard. Sounds weird, but I totally recommend it. Of course, the hairdryer was on the lowest warm setting and did not burn. The sound was very soothing and it worked a treat. The babies loved this and it was a lifesaver!

As well as always having a sponge or flannel available for a quick wipe, as suggested before, you’ll need lots of cloths to drape over your shoulder when feeding, because your baby will regurgitate the food and stain your clothes!

Babies love music and when you sing to them. If I remember correctly from EE, you can sing well. Music will also put you in a good mood for when you’re feeling tired and grumpy.

Get a good routine going, especially at night. Having a bedtime ritual will help train your baby to sleep at a regular time. Babies and kids need some structure (to feel stability and safety) and parents need some free time.

Have fun!
Keep baby's bottom dry by changing wet diapers frequently....Let bottoms air out by letting them go without diaper occasionally....And they won't get diaper rash.

Feeding yogurt can clear up thrush.

Maybe some will disagree, but I kept my infant son in my bedroom for quite awhile. I felt it important that he be in the circle of my protection.
You can start "potty training" earlier than what you'd think. The consensus seems to be to first have the baby learn to soil itself, and only at a later point have it unlearn this habit. I think this is an unnecessary step that could be dealt with from the start.

When baby is unhappy, check :
  • Hungry
  • Tired
  • Wind
  • Filled nappy
Also check the precursor to "Filled nappy", which is "wanting to fill nappy". Babies don't really want to soil themselves (osit), but they get used to it over time, and I think this contributes to a lot of the problems people experience in the so called "potty training" phase. Many times when a baby cries it's simply noticing it has to go potty, but knows the uncomfortable soiled feeling which results by going in the diaper. I know people say babies can't "hold it in" but I'm telling you that is not my experience.

What we did was just constantly have a bucket or potty close by to hold the baby over when it needs to go. There's two ways to approach this:

You could try to keep the baby out of diapers as much of the time as possible, and when you notice it starts to discharge, immediately hold it over the potty. After some time baby will start to signal you more clearly when it's time to go, and you will begin to soil less of your clothes and bedsheets over time.

The less messy version is to actually use diapers all of the time, but as often as possible, try to keep it clean, i.e. watch the baby's signals, and if you as much as suspect bodily fluids, take the diaper of the baby, and hold her over the potty/bucket. Even if you're too late to catch it and the diaper is soiled, you can hold the baby over the potty (also to check if more is coming) to get it used to associating these bodily functions with the potty. I recall many times when our kids would cry and show signs of distress (effectively "holding it in") and immediately calm down when the diaper was removed and they were held over the potty to release.

Doing this you will save a lot of money on diapers because after some time you will learn the baby's signals and react on them immediately, thus getting another use out of the diaper. I remember the feeling of success when we noticed that the same diaper we put on in the morning could be left on for the following night because of us remaining vigilant throughout the day.

As I said in the beginning, this will also give you a huge head start on "potty training", since the child will never get accustomed to soiling itself, hence never having to go through the process of unlearning it.
Hlat has a great list above. Aside from Healing Developmental Trauma suggested by marek, another great book is The Continuum Concept by Jean Leidloff. She was a journalist, invited to spend some time with a tribe in the South American jungle, and observed how differently they raised and cared for their children. It dovetails nicely with the HDT book & was an eye-opener for me!

According to Jean Liedloff, the continuum concept is the idea that in order to achieve optimal physical, mental and emotional development, human beings — especially babies — require the kind of experience to which our species adapted during the long process of our evolution. For an infant, these include such experiences as...

*constant physical contact with his mother (or another familiar caregiver as needed) from birth;
*sleeping in his parents' bed, in constant physical contact, until he leaves of his own volition;
*breastfeeding "on cue" — nursing in response to his own body's signals;
*being constantly carried in arms or otherwise in contact with someone, usually his mother, and allowed to observe (or nurse, or sleep) while the person carrying him goes about his or her business — until the infant begins creeping, then crawling on his own impulse, usually at six to eight months;
*having caregivers immediately respond to his signals (squirming, crying, etc.), without judgment, displeasure, or invalidation of his needs, yet showing no undue concern nor making him the constant center of attention;
*sensing (and fulfilling) his elders' expectations that he is innately social and cooperative and has strong self-preservation instincts, and that he is welcome and worthy.

In contrast, a baby subjected to modern Western childbirth and child-care practices often experiences...
*traumatic separation from his mother at birth due to medical intervention and placement in maternity wards, in physical isolation except for the sound of other crying newborns, with the majority of male babies further traumatized by medically unnecessary circumcision surgery;
*at home, sleeping alone and isolated, often after "crying himself to sleep";
*scheduled feeding, with his natural nursing impulses often ignored or "pacified";
*being excluded and separated from normal adult activities, relegated for hours on end to a nursery, crib or playpen where he is inadequately stimulated by toys and other inanimate objects;
*caregivers often ignoring, discouraging, belittling or even punishing him when he cries or otherwise signals his needs; or else responding with excessive concern and anxiety, making him the center of attention;
sensing (and conforming to) his caregivers' expectations that he is incapable of self-preservation, is innately antisocial, and cannot learn correct behavior without strict controls, threats and a variety of manipulative "parenting techniques" that undermine his exquisitely evolved learning process.

Evolution has not prepared the human infant for this kind of experience. He cannot comprehend why his desperate cries for the fulfillment of his innate expectations go unanswered, and he develops a sense of wrongness and shame about himself and his desires. If, however, his continuum expectations are fulfilled — precisely at first, with more variation possible as he matures — he will exhibit a natural state of self-assuredness, well-being and joy. Infants whose continuum needs are fulfilled during the early, in-arms phase grow up to have greater self-esteem and become more independent than those whose cries go unanswered for fear of "spoiling" them or making them too dependent.
I believe the following article can be very helpful to the newborn parents🙏

“The main enemy of all parents, especially babies, during periods of their illness and indisposition is fear. Fear of trusting one's own assessment of the situation (because society has firmly entrenched in people the 'knowing' that they don't understand a damn thing about their own children and that only 'specially trained people' have the right to decide); the fear that infectious diseases, which used to be a normal and necessary milestone in the development of immunity, have suddenly become 'killers'; fear of symptoms such as fever, cough and rash; fear that without ibuprofen or paracetamol, fever will certainly lead to convulsions; fear that each rash will be meningitis; fear of letting cough and mucus run its normal course (out of the body); fear that without antibiotics it is impossible to overcome the disease. The idea is clear, I think.

And do you know what it all means? Frightened parent = stressed parent. More than one study has shown that stressed mothers 'infect' children with this stress, and the younger the child, the stronger this connection. And after the initial release of steroid hormones (stress) in the body, what happens? Decreased efficiency of the immune system. A vicious circle - the child is sick > you are stressed > the child is stressed > he is less able to tolerate the disease > you are even more stressed.

What to do with it? Deep breath, even deeper exhalation. And then - depending on what symptoms your child shows at that particular moment. But in general, it is worth remembering the following postulates:

- the disease is not when running nose and the temperature goes off scale. Oddly enough - these manifestations are the final stage of the disease, this is the CLEANING that the body carries out at the end of the main pain. During the illness itself, bacteria or viruses leave behind a certain amount of debris (toxins, decay products, decay products of our cells, etc.), which is superimposed on the level of toxins that is already in the body of the child at the time of illness and leads to more or less the acute phase of 'toxin poisoning' is what we see as symptoms.
- imagine that you are cleaning your garden and are going to burn all the garbage and fallen leaves, joyfully make a fire and suddenly a neighbor comes running with a fire extinguisher and fills it all with foam .... instead of a clean garden fertilized with ashes, you get black viscous slurry and dirt . So the temperature rises in the body so that the immune cells can more actively cope with the process of cleaning of the virus/bacteria. If you don't let it 'burn out' the right time, it doesn't matter, the body will return to this fire as many times as it needs to get rid of this garbage. If not in the form of temperature, then in other forms of detox (the situation "first he was on fire, we knocked him down, then he picked up something, we stopped him with a pill, then ...")

- It is precisely because of the cleansing that the body's standard set of actions is fever, diarrhea or vomiting, loss of appetite, rashes and runny nose/cough - all of which are necessary to get the debris out. Plugging the flow of garbage, you take it deep into the body of the child.

- a fact - if the process of cleansing, especially in infants, takes place without intervention, and with the necessary support - at the end of the stripping, the child takes a serious step in development. It could be a new tooth, or a more stable gait, or a new ability to process information.

- thus, what we should know and be able to do is not how to stop a running nose, how to lower the temperature, how to drastically remove a rash (that is, 'what pill to give from what'), but HOW TO HELP THE BODY IN THESE PHASES TO CARRY OUT THIS PURIFICATION MOST EFFECTIVELY AND WITH THE LEAST DISCOMFORT.”

For example I have two kids, 3 and 6 years old and non of them has ever taken any of big pharma remedies and everything is great. I help them only with homeopathy. It’s a big process of learning and trusting yourself but the results are very rewarding 😊
5 weeks, 3 days today.
A trick that I did without knowing it at the time and that allowed him to get used to sleeping through the night, was the following.

The baby until a certain weeks, should take the chest or a bottle every three hours.

So I took care of giving him every day without missing one, the bottle at three in the morning.

With the house in complete silence and acting stealthily like a ninja, I prepared and heated the bottle in hot water.

Then, without turning on any light, only with the illumination that came in from the street through the windows, I entered her room in complete darkness and I carefully took the sleeping baby in my arms.

He never woke up.

I would sit in the dark in the living room at home and with infinite calm I would bring the bottle to his mouth and he would drink it while still asleep.

Sometimes it took longer, other times right away, but I continued there the necesary time until he drink all the bottle.

The child never woke up due to hunger, nor was he kept awake by noise or other things.

So he got used to sleeping through the night and when he started eating more solid foods, after dinner, we put the boy to bed and he always slept through the night without waking up.

Obviously, a good diaper that lasts many hours is also essential.

I'm counting this in case it helps you, since I don't know anyone who has this and all the children of the people I know have trouble sleeping through the night.
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When I was a young mum and hadn't found this forum yet I spent a lot of time reading on the website of the Natural Child Project. Their ideas are similar to Jean Liedloff's Continuum Concept as Arwenn described above. The articles are not too long and perfect for young parents who lack time. Perhaps begin with the following article on how to hold your baby and take it from there. Basically, it boils down to external considering in regards to our most vulnerable and smallest human beings. When we haven't been given a good role model in early childhood we have to learn all these skills on a conscious level and unlearn many other things.

Also, the romance novels portray loving couples that turn into loving parents when they get kids.
Taking care of yourself and your partner is priority, along with taking care of your baby. If you are not okay your baby will not be okay.
Recognise when you need some time to yourself to go for a walk, do some exercise, meditation, cold shower- whatever helps you feel good, ask your partner or other family member to care for baby while you take this needed time for self care. Don’t feel like you have to do everything on your own. In other cultures it takes a whole village to raise a child, in our western culture we are so separated that we tend to try to do everything on our own which can burn us out, especially as new parents.

Keeping a check on your mental and physical health is essential as it can take many months, even years, for your baby to settle into a routine of sleeping, which can change and fluctuate for no apparent reason.

If at any time either you or your partner aren’t doing okay get professional help as soon as possible. I’ve had post natal depression 3 times, it’s horrible, it took me 3 years to recover from the last round.
I’m pregnant with baby 4 and doing everything I can now to try to avoid it when baby girl arrives in September.

Congratulations on the arrival of your new little family member. :love:
Just to add to my post, proper nutrition is an absolute must do.
I’ve linked an overview to a book called The Potnatal Depletion Cure which dives into how to replenish the body after pregnancy, breastfeeding, taking care of a baby and toddler…. I would suggest that this would be as important for fathers too who also lose sleep, are susceptible to post natal depression and expend extra energy on their young children.
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